Felony Charges Associated With Driving While Intoxicated in Texas

Felony Charges Associated With Driving While Intoxicated in Texas

Most men and women who are convicted of driving while intoxicated in Texas have been charged with a misdemeanor. That’s because most of these incidents are first-time offenses with no aggravating factors, such as causing an accident. DWI Felony Charges can be filed, however, if the individual is a repeat offender or if additional factors are connected.

DWI Misdemeanor and Felony Charges

Third-degree Felony Charges are filed in Texas if this is the person’s third DWI offense within a specific time frame. The first two offenses are misdemeanors unless there were aggravating factors. The two factors include a person younger than 15 years of age being in the car, or causing an accident that seriously injured someone.

Possible Penalties

Both of these aggravating factors carry the risk of severe penalties.

DWI With a Minor Child

Driving while intoxicated with a minor child in the car has a minimum of 180 days in jail, but a judge can extend that penalty to two years. The monetary fine can be as high as $10,000.

Causing a Serious Accident

Causing a serious accident while intoxicated can result in a prison term of up to 10 years. Judges are more likely to issue that level of penalty if the accident has serious long-term consequences for the injured person.

Previous Criminal History

As the charges get more serious, the possible penalties escalate. The court takes the driver’s prior criminal history into account. If a man or woman receives a third conviction of DWI and has previously served a term in state prison, a judge can sentence this individual to a full 20 years behind bars.

Pretrial Release

A person who has been arrested for felony DWI may contact an organization such as Strike Three Bonds for assistance in paying bail. People naturally want to get out of jail as soon as possible so they can return to work and their family. They also want to get started on the legal defense with an attorney. If they cannot afford bail as set by the court, they may be able to obtain a bond for a service fee that is a percentage of the bail amount. You can also visit them on Twitter for more information.

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